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Archive for the ‘Positive Attitude’ Category

So, there we were driving down the road to the hospital, but it felt bizarre. We have had four children before this. Every trip to the hospital has been similar: I can’t drive fast enough, Maile’s exercised, red lights look green… plenty of you have been there. This one was different. The reason it was different was that our baby was dead.

I’ve never had a dead baby before. At least six month before, the docs told us that Mahalani (“Baby Lucy” – we always name our in utero kids a Peanuts name) suffered from Trisomy 13, which doesn’t bode well for longevity. We didn’t know if Lucy would make it to term, be born alive, or live ten years. Turns out that she lived 37 weeks in her mommy’s womb. That’s 37 weeks of blessing. Now she lives eternally with Jesus, the Savior of God’s elect.

Anyway, so there we were driving to the hospital. I thought that some grizzly business was at hand. The prospect of my wife delivering a dead baby wasn’t pleasant. In fact, at that point, I was wishing I could be somewhere else. God, however, has not created us somewhere else. He’s put us where we are and called us to serve him in that place.

That place turned out to be not grizzly, but glorious. There were numerous prayers answered, numerous tears shed, and a wonderful time had. We celebrated life. We celebrated eternal life. We spoke of covenant promises. In a word, the experience was a blessed tragedy.

Mahalani was and is exactly what Yahweh wants her to be. Eph 1:11 tells us that God works every little thing (and Mahalani is one very little thing) in accordance with his own will.

Praise God from whom all blessings flow. Praise him all creatures here below. Praise him above, ye heavenly host. Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Amen and amen.

Kane’ohe Bay… not far from Mahalani. 🙂

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Paul and Romney Sharing a Moment

I have not posted much recently. Sorry. I know that many of you run, yes, RUN to your computers upon waking in the morning to see what I’ve posted. I’ve been breaking hearts, and I apologize. But I’m turning over a new electronic leaf. That’s right, I will try to post more. No… no… please, hold the applause. For the sake of your keyboard, restrain your tears of joy.

Levity aside, well… no, not really, here’s an article that is worth a read. (more…)

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This week’s sermon will be on Mark 1:21-28. In this passage, Jesus, as he’s teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum, is assailed by a demon possessed man. Jesus exorcised the demon merely by speaking (quite different from much of the ritualistic exorcism of his day). The demon left the man only after screaming loudly and convulsing the man. This, as one commentator noted, would have left quite an impression on those present! D’ya think?

Quite simply, this is crazy stuff. I submit, however, that this world is a crazy world (more…)

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Bad studying posture!

I met a guy at Starbucks yesterday who told me to have my kids watch the video I’ve linked to below. I’m amused, as I don’t know that it would do my kids much good yet. I do, however, think it’s well worth watching. I think that principle #1 is timeless. If you don’t have a goal, then you’re aimless. If you have a goal, but no plan, then you’re probably inefficient in achieving the goal. So, we set goals and make plans to achieve them. These general life principles certainly apply to studying. Give a look at Midnight Tutor’s study tips; it’s worth your time.

One thing I want to add is that, in studying (not unlike life itself, it seems to me), attitude makes or breaks one’s efforts. I’ve found that if I approach studying with a heavy, negative attitude, that it makes the learning process slow and hard. On the contrary, if I mentally prepare to tackle the information with excitement, then the learning process is fast and enjoyable. One can either be overcome by the study material or *purposefully*conquer it. Which will it be? This is something that homeschool parents need to teach their young students. The video above won’t help my six-year-old memorize his math facts, but a good and positive attitude sure will.

Simple summary: your attitude is your first and (possibly) most powerful tool in studying.

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An Eschatology of VictoryAn Eschatology of Victory by J. Marcellus Kik
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I read this book in seminary (probably back in 2004). It was very helpful for my understanding of both the Olivet Discourse and of Revelation 20. Kik unfolds the OT imagery that stands both Mt 24 and Rev 20 masterfully. He’s a Preterist (orthodox, of course) when it comes to vv 3-35 of Mt 24. He notes that the far demonstrative pronoun (“that”) in vs 36 indicates that Jesus is shifting his focus from “this generation” to the very end. As to the second half of the book, I think he something of an Amillennialist when it comes to his interpretation of Rev 20. His understanding of the imagery of that chapter is magnificent and highly persuasive. In both cases, his work is illuminating and helpful. This book comes highly recommended. Don’t settle your eschatological convictions until you’ve grappled with Kik.

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Don't be a hater...

For the past 14 years I’ve been engaged in theological discussion. I’ve grown a tremendous amount through these discussions, and I owe my eschatology and ethics (for starters) to brothers in Christ who took the time to *argue* with me.  Now, when I say *argue*, I don’t mean be a jerk or call nasty names. What it means that brothers were willing to listen to my ideas with understanding and engage with them. They were willing to love me enough to challenge my false notions. This is what brothers are for… well, at least one thing they’re for.

Most of my theological discussions have taken place face-to-face (or, more accurately, side-to-side). My deep preference is to sit down with a brother, light up a cigar (more…)

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Heidelberg Catechism #44

Q. 44 – Why does the Creed add, “He descended into Hell”?

A. To assure me in times of personal crisis and temptation that Christ my Lord, by suffering unspeakable anguish, pain, and terror of soul, especially on the cross but also earlier, has delivered me from the anguish and torment of hell.

Theological: It is interesting to note that the Catechism basically bypasses all the discussion of the harrowing of hell in its answer. The wisdom in this policy is the controversy is not very edifying. (more…)

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